New Zealand Will Offer Free Sanitary Products At Schools To Fight Period Poverty. By Rachel Treisman

All schools in New Zealand will offer free sanitary products to students starting in June, officials said Thursday. The initiative, which aims to combat period poverty, expands on a pilot program that launched last year.

In their announcement, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Jan Tinetti said the program is open to all primary, intermediate, secondary and kura, or Maori-language immersion schools. Arden said that providing free period products at schools is one way for the government to help address poverty, increase school attendance and support students' well-being.

"Young people should not miss out on their education because of something that is a normal part of life for half the population," she said. "Removing barriers to healthy, active, educational outcomes for children and young people is an important part of the Government's Youth and Wellbeing Strategy."

The Ministry of Education will work with suppliers to initiate a phased rollout of the program, with period products to become available starting in June for schools that opt in by March. Those that do not will have the chance to opt-in at a later date, officials said. The undertaking will